We look at current conditions in the district’s labor markets and trends affecting its workers, as well as topics related to healthy labor markets, such as workforce development and education.
We review the recent literature on the causes and consequences of financial exclusion—that is, the lack of bank account ownership—in the United States. We examine existing work in a range of fields, including economics, finance, public policy, and sociology. Read More
The size of the US labor force declined by 2.3 million people between December 2019 and December 2021. Our experts examine demographic changes to determine if this decline is a passing trend or if it’s here to stay. Read More
Inflation expectations have an impact on one’s economic behavior. We show that the inflation expectations of professional forecasters and consumers are predicted by very different prices. While professional forecasters weigh prices similar to the consumer price index, consumers seem to focus on prices they see more often, such as those for food and new vehicles. These are also prices that have seen disproportionally high volatility since the onset of the pandemic. We argue that heterogeneity in the importance of component-specific inflation can have relevant economic implications and disproportionate effects on consumers’ inflation expectations that can, in turn, affect economic behavior. Read More
Median and trimmed-mean inflation rates tend to be useful estimates of trend inflation over long periods, but they can exhibit persistent departures from the underlying trend over shorter horizons. In this Commentary, we document that the extent of this bias is related to the degree of skewness in the distribution of price changes. The shift in the skewness of the cross-sectional price-change distribution during the pandemic means that median PCE and trimmed-mean PCE inflation rates have recently been understating the trend in PCE inflation by about 15 and 35 basis points, respectively. Read More
When Benefits Cliffs Turn Raises into Penalties, Local and National Efforts Help Workers and Employers Navigate Options
Getting a raise is usually a good thing. But what if it comes at the cost of losing a benefit that you rely on? Here’s what some organizations are doing to help workers navigate the path to economic independence. Read more.